Piekalkiewicz, Janusz.


1st Eng., ed., 1985. 285 pp., photo-ills., ills., maps & plans. D.j., 27 x 19cm. FINE. The decision to attack the Soviet Union was one of Hitler's most critical, and it changed the world, for one thing resulting in Britain and America becoming Stalin's allies. The stubbornness of Hitler in the face of the military disaster, for another thing, resulted in the German High Command's becoming the instrument of the Fuehrer's megalomania during the last phase of the battle for Moscow. "Operation Typhoon" was a fiasco. German casualties were enormous and although German tank spearheads reached within 30 km of Moscow, victory was never achieved. The author has reconstructed this campaign brilliantly, using the actual news reports, military dispatches and media accounts. We see, for instance, how the Germans were led to believe from the media that victory was assured. These reports are followed by the author's analyses and the whole is superbly illustrated with photographs. The juxtaposition of events as reported in the press, with the historical accounts, make fascinating reading. Accounts of Napoleon's similar disastrous campaign are run side by side for comparison.

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